Slow Cooker Tropical Pulled Chicken
Naturally sweet, tangy and oh-so delicious, Slow Cooker Tropical Pulled Chicken is a breeze to throw together and makes for a healthy dinner everyone will love!
Pulled chicken in the slow cooker. It’s easy to throw together with just a few ingredients, everyone in the family likes it, and the pulled chicken can be served in a number of different ways.
Taking one base recipe and using it in various meals throughout the week is essential for keeping weeknight cooking doable, and is how I stay sane as a working mama, while still eating real food.
Simple, versatile, and so darn delicious, this pulled chicken is amazing served pilled high on buns topped with slaw one night, wrapped in lettuce wraps another, or served with rice and roasted veggies another.
This pulled chicken gets a tropical twist from pineapple and ginger, lending a little natural sweetness and zip without being cloying or spicy.
It’s a fun way to get a taste of summer, without heating up the kitchen.
I hope you’ll give this one a try soon. Now, let’s make some Slow Cooker Tropical Pulled Chicken!
RECIPE & KID-FRIENDLY ADAPTATIONS
1 | Serve the pulled chicken in buns, in bowls, or as a filling for lettuce wraps.
2 | Use boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, whichever you prefer.
THIS RECIPE IS . . .
Slow Cooker Tropical Pulled Chicken
- ¼ cup reduced sodium, gluten-free tamari*
- 1 8-oz can crushed pineapple
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
- 5-Ingredient Everyday Creamy Cabbage Slaw, for serving (optional)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the tamari, crushed pineapple, tomato paste, honey, garlic powder, onion powder, ginger and salt. Scoop ¼ cup of the mixture and set aside.
- Add the chicken to a 6-qt slow cooker. Add the remaining sauce, turning the chicken to coat.
- Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6.
- Uncover and shred the chicken with 2 forks. Add the remaining ¼ cup sauce, stirring to combine. Taste and add additional salt if desired.
- Serve the chicken warm on buns, in bowls, or in lettuce wraps with Creamy Cabbage Slaw, if desired.
Nutrition Information:Nutrition disclaimer
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This recipe is delicious! I made it last week, and my whole family loved it! Even my 4- and 6-year-old daughters! Thank you for another amazing versatile slow cooker chicken recipe! 😘
Melissa, yay, I always love hearing that a recipe has been a hit for your family! Hope this keeps you guys well fed this summer. xo
I made this yesterday and both my husband and I loved it! I didn’t get it in the slow cooker in time, so made it on top of the stove in a large skillet. I added some chopped onion on top of the chicken, covered it, and let it cook down. It was delicious! A sweet potato salad and some leftover Greek salad complemented it well. The chicken was just as good, if not better, for leftovers today. We are definitely adding it to our rotation of meals.
Yay, so glad you enjoyed and made it your own!
Hi Robyn! This recipe looks great, but I was wondering what cut you would recommend if I wanted to use pork instead of chicken. Thanks. 🙂
Steph, I’d probably go with 2 pounds pork loin roast or pork shoulder (you may need to play around with the time a little to make sure it cooks through and is shredable.) If you give it a try let us know how it turns out!
Would coconut aminos would instead of Tamari so it could be soy free?
Katryna, yes, you can sub coconut aminos for the tamari–you’ll likely need to add more salt, and it will be a bit sweeter, but still very tasty!
Hello there! Could I use coconut aminos instead of the tamari?
Amy, yes, though you’ll need to do a little more tinkering with the recipe, since coconut aminos are sweeter and don’t contain as much salt. You might want to add some salt, and then taste and adjust accordingly. Hope you enjoy!
I want to make this for a group of 12 people. Can I double the recipe and cook all at once in the slow cooker? Meaning will it all fit and cook ok? Or is it best to do this in two batches? Thank you.
Elissa, if you have a 6 quart slow cooker everything should fit. You’ll need to add extra time, so check after the given time in the recipe and then add in increments of 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked to the consistency you like.
Made this nice and easy recipe last night and it was a huge hit! My very picky tween and teen daughters AND their super picky dad just loved it and asked me to make another batch to bring for lunches! Thank you 🙂
Yay, love it when that happens! So glad your crew enjoyed, Lisa. 🙂
Hey Robyn! I just got the an Instant Pot and was thinking about trying this one it it. Do you think I could use the recipe as written with the enchilada chicken for pressure instructions or should I add some chicken broth?
Amanda, I actually think you might be able to do it with just the sauce (without adding any water), because the chicken releases a decent amount of liquid in the cooking process. I’d do high pressure, 15 minutes, quick release. If there’s not enough liquid your IP should alert you, and you can always add additional stock or water. If you try it let us know how it turns out!
I am happy to report it was delicious! I did the full recipe for the sauce with the 1.25 lb of chicken breast I had. As you suggested, I did 15 minutes at high pressure and let the steam natural release for 5 minutes before letting off the rest. So good!
Yay, so glad it turned out. Thanks for sharing–now we know it works in the IP. Cheers!
Hello! Looks yummy! Have you tried making this recipe in the instant pot? If so, could you share the directions?
Hi Elisabeth, I have not, but it might work! Some instant pots have a very sensitive burn function, which can be set off by both the honey and the tomato paste. You could try mixing the sauce minus the tomato paste and the honey, adding the chicken, then adding the tomato paste and honey on top (don’t stir), then high pressure for 8 minutes, then quick release, stir, and shred the chicken. If you give it a try let us know how it goes!
Thank you! I actually tried it in the IP exactly as you had it written in the recipe for the pressure cooker and it came out great! I only had 1.25 lbs of chicken and cooked it high pressure at 14 min. And quick release. I prob could’ve done a shorter amount of time.
But Thanks for your great recipes! My husband really liked it and I bet my 2 year old would like it too!
Elizabeth, oh yay, so glad you tried it and that it worked out. Appreciate you sharing the results with us. Cheers!
I made this tonight and it was a hit for my family of four. I’m happy to have left overs too! thank you.
Yay, so happy you all enjoyed this one. And yay for leftovers! 🙂
Made this today and it was delish!!!!! I did add some sliced red pepper (for more nutrients and color— and because I needed to use up this pepper!). I poured this over some jasmine rice I had it was made this a complete meal! Thanks!
Tina, yay, so glad you enjoyed this one, and LOVE that you added a veggie! I’ll definitely do that myself next time. Thanks for the tip and for taking the time to leave a rating and review. Cheers!
I doubled the recipe for a dinner party and substituted pork for the chicken. It smelled amazing while it was cooking. Everyone loved it. We’ll definitely be making this dish again. Thanks for the great recipe!
Kerry, wonderful to know this recipe worked well with pork, too, thanks for the tip and for sharing your thoughts!
We love this recipe so much! It has such a great flavor and is amazing paired with the slaw!
Yay, so happy to hear you enjoyed this one, Pam! Thanks so much for leaving a review. 🙂